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Vaccinium oxycoccos (Small cranberry)
Loughmiller, Campbell and Lynn

Vaccinium oxycoccos

Vaccinium oxycoccos L.

Small Cranberry

Ericaceae (Heath Family)

Synonym(s): Oxycoccus hagerupii, Oxycoccus intermedius, Oxycoccus microcarpos, Oxycoccus ovalifolius, Oxycoccus oxycoccos, Oxycoccus oxycoccos, Oxycoccus palustris, Oxycoccus palustris ssp. microphyllus, Oxycoccus palustris var. intermedius, Oxycoccus palustris var. ovalifolius, Oxycoccus quadripetalus, Oxycoccus quadripetalus var. microphyllus, Vaccinium microcarpos, Vaccinium oxycoccos ssp. microphyllum, Vaccinium oxycoccos var. intermedium, Vaccinium oxycoccos var. microphyllum, Vaccinium oxycoccos var. ovalifolium


USDA Native Status: L48 (N), AK (N), CAN (N), GL (N), SPM (N)

Vaccinium oxycoccus, a native of North America and Eurasia that occurs in mainland Canada and across the northern United States, has small leaves that are whitish beneath and have rolled edges.


From the Image Gallery

4 photo(s) available in the Image Gallery

Plant Characteristics

Duration: Perennial
Habit: Shrub
Leaf Retention: Evergreen
Leaf Complexity: Simple
Fruit Type: Berry
Size Notes: Stems trailing, shoots up to about 2 inches tall.

Bloom Information

Bloom Color: White , Pink
Bloom Time: Jun


USA: AK , CT , ID , IL , IN , MA , MD , ME , MI , MN , NH , NJ , NY , OH , OR , PA , RI , VA , VT , WA , WI , WV
Canada: AB , BC , MB , NB , NL , NS , ON , PE , QC , SK
Native Habitat: Bog/Fen,Tundra

Growing Conditions

Light Requirement: Sun , Part Shade , Shade
Soil Moisture: Moist , Wet
Soil pH: Acidic (pH<6.8)


Conspicuous Flowers: yes
Attracts: Butterflies
Larval Host: Bog Fritillary (Boloria eunomia)

Value to Beneficial Insects

Special Value to Native Bees

This information was provided by the Pollinator Program at The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation.

Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA)

Bog Fritillary
(Boloria eunomia)

Larval Host
Learn more at BAMONA

Mr. Smarty Plants says

Groundcover to reduce erosion for shady area in New York
May 05, 2009
We live on a lake with gravelly and clay soils, lots of wind and little sun. I am looking for a native ground cover that will help reduce erosion over some of the steep slopes facing south (under shad...
view the full question and answer

National Wetland Indicator Status

This information is derived from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers National Wetland Plant List, Version 3.1 (Lichvar, R.W. 2013. The National Wetland Plant List: 2013 wetland ratings. Phytoneuron 2013-49: 1-241). Click here for map of regions.


Bibref 1186 - Field Guide to Moths of Eastern North America (2005) Covell, C.V., Jr.
Bibref 1185 - Field Guide to Western Butterflies (Peterson Field Guides) (1999) Opler, P.A. and A.B. Wright

Search More Titles in Bibliography

Web Reference

Webref 38 - Flora of North America (2019) Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
Webref 23 - Southwest Environmental Information Network (2009) SEINet - Arizona Chapter

Additional resources

USDA: Find Vaccinium oxycoccos in USDA Plants
FNA: Find Vaccinium oxycoccos in the Flora of North America (if available)
Google: Search Google for Vaccinium oxycoccos


Record Modified: 2023-01-02
Research By: TWC Staff

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